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NIOSH Program Portfolio



NORA Construction Sector Strategic Goals

Goal 13.0: Increase the use of “prevention through design (PtD)” approaches to prevent or reduce safety and health hazards in construction.

Intermediate Goal 13.2: Evaluate, clarify, and address the most prevalent obstacles to acceptance and implementation of CHPtD:
  • fear of liability
  • lack of expertise in safety and in designing for safety
  • uncertainty about costs associated with CHPtD

Research Goals
Research Goal Number Goal Description Status
13.2.1 Explore and characterize the issue of liability concerns for designers. Research real versus perceived liability. Develop potential solutions such as model contract language, design specifications, and legal protection that allow designers to incorporate CHPtD concepts without exposing themselves to inappropriate liability.
13.2.2 Develop a recommended/suggested minimum level of adequate safety and health training for design students and determine the number of schools providing an acceptable baseline level of safety training.
13.2.3 Characterize economic aspects associated with implementing CHPtD concepts.
  • Will inclusion of safe design concepts increase direct costs for designers?
  • Will there be costs associated with higher insurance premiums and associated legal defense with potential changes in liability?
  • Will increased design fees associated with CHPtD be offset by reduced construction cost, potential lawsuits, and costly injuries in the total design and construction of the project?
  • Will improved design result in reduce costs over the lifecycle of a building or structure by lowering safety and health costs (e.g., installing temporary fall protection) associated with maintenance, renovation, and eventual demolition?
  • What costs and benefits should be included in CHPtD business case studies?

Other Projects for Goal 13.2

Project Title % Attributed to Construction
Prevention through Design (PtD) Adoption Readiness: Control of Health Hazards in Construction 100%
Page last updated:April 24, 2013
Page last reviewed:May 23, 2011
Content Source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Office of the Director


NIOSH Program:


construction worker, crane, architect